The main library at NUR; plans are underway to introduce
A library and information programme in Rwanda
The National University of Rwanda (NUR) and the Kigali Institute of Education KIE have agreed to enter into a partnership to run a Library and Information. . The program aims at promoting the training of information professionals in Rwanda and the Great Lakes Region.
The development was reached at during a workshop held at KIE last week through the partnership between top-ranked USA universities, Syracuse and Cornell and Rwandan higher learning institutions.
In the arrangement, Syracuse and Cornell Universities will host the 33 selected Rwandan candidates who will be trained for a year in the USA to form a core Faculty in Information Sciences and then complete their program at NUR and KIE.
The faculty will thereafter, reopen the diploma and upgrade this program to bachelor’s degree level in Library and Information Sciences at Kigali Institute of Education and initiate a Master’s degree program in Information Sciences at NUR.
This programme is not new in Rwanda. The diploma program in Library and Information sciences was launched at KIE in 2001 but closed in 2009 due to lack of experts in the library and information sciences.
According to the coordinator of the project, Dr Sarah Webb, Library and Information Sciences are essential to cope with Rwanda’s vision 2020.
“The Government of Rwanda, through its vision 2020, is wants to transform the nation into a knowledge based economy.
However, one of the impediments to this vision is lack of professionals to provide knowledge support services in education, research and industry. “This project is a solution to this problem” says Dr Webb.
The Rector of the National University of Rwanda, Prof. Silas Lwakabamba, in his remarks at the workshop, praised the project initiators and said that it is an integral and important part of forthcoming NUR projects.
“Starting next year, the National University of Rwanda in partnership with Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) plans to train many people in M.Sc and PHD programs in Agriculture, Business, Development Studies and ICT. All these candidates will need information, so, this project will boost our ability to increase students’ capacity in research,” said Lwakabamba.
In an interview, the Director of Higher Education Council (HEC) Prof. Geoffrey Rugege commended the initiative and said that it will help in the area of research for Rwanda and Africa at large.
“The advancement in technology will ease the putting into practice of the programme though we are still faced with the problem of lack of enough professionals,” said Rugege.